Air Asia has launched the first ever daily direct flight from Kochi to Bangkok Don Mueang starting from May 17, 2016.Soraya Homchuen TAT Director of Mumbai said, “We are very excited to add a new connection for Indian visitors to Thailand. Now those residing in South India can fly to Bangkok from Kochi in addition to Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad.”She went on to elaborate, “In 2015 arrivals to Thailand from India reached 1,069,149 travellers, making India the 6th largest group of travellers to our country. Apart from delicious Thai cuisine, we are keen to showcase Thai hospitality and various attractions nationwide. Beyond Bangkok’s temples, shopping malls and nightlife, there is still much to explore. We invite you to visit our famous beaches in southern Thailand and relax among the natural landscape and green mountains of northern Thailand.”From Bangkok, AirAsia passengers can conveniently connect to Phuket, Krabi, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai.Additionally, AirAsia X has started a new direct route between Kuala Lumpur and Delhi, which would now operate four times a week, with flights departing KLIA every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday at 1900 and arriving in Delhi at 2200. The return services would depart the Indian capital at 2315, arriving back into KL at 0730 the next morning. The airline would be flying its 377-seat, two-class Airbus A330-300 aircraft along the route.
Share23TweetShare1Email24 Shares“The Great Journey of Leonard the Leaf” by Nicholas CardotMay 17, 2017; Boston GlobeIt is no secret that the U.S. has a large prison population. The Bureau of Justice Statistics’ latest data indicates that there were 1.53 million prisoners across the country during the year 2015, which sadly represents the smallest prison population since 2005. Additionally, there were an estimated 4.75 million adults under supervision such as parole. This incredibly high prison population is a huge burden on society, leading to broken families and taxpayer frustration.Although advocates have long been fighting for a solution (see NPQ coverage here, here, and here), there is no easy fix. Progress may be within reach, however. A new ruling from the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court may have a positive impact on decreasing recidivism rates among persons with disabilities in the state’s prison system. Earlier this week, the state’s high court ruled that, as an extension of the Americans with Disabilities Act, prisoners with disabilities who are seeking parole need to be connected with community resources to help them once they reenter the community. The court went on to say that, if needed, experts should be hired to ensure prisoners have a plan for addressing their disability once they are out in the community.While it may seem to be a small consolation, if implemented correctly, this ruling could have huge implications for Massachusetts’s prisoners with disabilities. Some disabilities, such as traumatic brain injury (TBI), can hinder proper decision-making. For instance, damage to the frontal lobe, where people weigh the consequences of their actions, can lead to impulsivity and recklessness. Other disabilities, such as autism, can have triggers that when ignited cause people to become violent. In either case, prison is not a solution; in fact, it may exacerbate the issue, as individuals with disabilities may not be able to understand orders and end up relegated to solitary confinement.Current statistics indicate that 20 percent of prisoners and 30 percent of jail inmates have a cognitive disability, and both prisoners and jail inmates were more likely to have a disability than the general population. Clearly, there is a disconnect between the legal system and services for persons with disabilities. At the very least, there is a systemic misunderstanding about the role disabilities can play in criminal or violent behavior.The ruling in Massachusetts appears to be a step in the right direction, but there is still work to be done to prevent persons with disabilities from ending up in the prison system to begin with if they do not truly belong there. As James R. Pingeon, a Massachusetts attorney involved with the SJC ruling, aptly said, “Prison beds should be reserved for people who are truly dangerous and not wasted on prisoners with disabilities who could live safely in the community if the parole board would help them find appropriate housing and services.”— Sheela NimishakaviShare23TweetShare1Email24 Shares